Relatives of a BP executive killed along with six Britons when terrorists laid siege to an Algerian gas plant hope an inquest will provide them with vital answers, their lawyers said.

Forty hostages were killed at the In Amenas plant during a four-day stand-off in January last year. A pre-inquest hearing into the deaths of the Britons, including Scots Carson Bilsland and Kenneth Whiteside, and UK-based Colombian Carlos Estrada is being held today in Crawley, West Sussex.

Lawyers for Mr Estrada's family, who live in Chelsea, west London, said his relatives were still in the dark over the circumstances of his death.

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Clive Garner, of law firm Irwin Mitchell, representing Mr Estrada's family, said: "It is now over a year since Mr Estrada died and his family still do not know exactly what happened to him."

A date for a full inquest has not yet been set.